There are some good things to be said about walking. Not many, but some. Walking takes longer, for example, than any other known form of locomotion except crawling. Thus it stretches time and prolongs life. Life is already too short to waste on speed. I have a friend who's always in a hurry; he never gets anywhere. Walking makes the world much bigger and thus more interesting. You have time to observe the details. The utopian technologists foresee a future for us in which distance is annihilated. … To be everywhere at once is to be nowhere forever, if you ask me. Edward Abbey
It's another blustery, grey day up top. The high yesterday reached 47 degrees. The overnight low was 39 degrees. It was 40 degrees and clear at 7am observation. The mountain received another .76 inches of rain and there is still patchy snow and ice remaining up top. Alum is pretty much clear, but there are a few sections that I'd suggest using Microspikes for. I'd imagine it'll be even less treacherous today, so get out and enjoy it!
I had a fantastic hike up Alum yesterday afternoon. The temperatures were unbelievable to me - I'd forgotten what consistent warmth felt like. I found myself bracing to go outside, only to be surprised by how incredible 70 degrees felt. It felt like a foreign concept to be in a t-shirt and shorts without feeling like a fool. It was a fantastic afternoon to hike up, with patches of ice strewn across the waterlogged ground and warm, heavy spring scented air - characteristic of the shift between the two seasons. I passed my last set of folks near Gracie's Pulpit (they caught me singing 'I Shall Be Released' as I hiked up, alone, I thought) and enjoyed the solitude of one of my final hikes up the mountain for the season. The winds really picked up on some of the ledges and the squally weather was on the horizon. It almost looked like a thunderstorm. Even if I refuse to believe what the calendar says, it now seems apparent that winter is winding down on the mountain. The real world doesn't lie.
3/5/2015 01:28:46 am
Realy like Edward Abbey quote. I'm reading "A History of Many Glacier Hotel" by John Hagen; interresting! Back to Mt LeConte, love the pictures.
3/5/2015 02:03:01 am
Especially love the 3rd photo!
3/5/2015 02:28:45 am
See reply below. 😉
J.P your pictures and up dates of all the many things going on in and around the Mountain,Lodge,and all your adventures wed. up date on weather etc.just makes my day complete.It is going to be very hard not hearing from you each day and I would love to hear from you sometime when you return to my second favorite place New Hampshire!!!! I would love to meet you some day but since that isn't likely I will look forward hearing from you Nov.25,2015 if not sooner.
3/5/2015 03:46:01 am
Do 'Nov.25,2015' mean JP is winter caretaker 2015-2016??
3/5/2015 02:27:22 am
I completely agree with you Jenny! I'm currently reading The Monkey Wrench Gang and he doesn't hide his disgust for businesses that do any harm to the environment. That said, I do find him to be an excellent writer with the ability to vividly paint a picture with words.
Agreed. He was an amazing writer, totally opposed to cliches and dedicated to the concrete particulars of the moment--the truth of the experience. It is rare to find someone who had a big cause but never sacrificed his larger ideas to his honest, truthful observation of details whether or not they fit into anyone's larger scheme.
Norman,J.P.hasn't said if he will be back but I am keeping my fingers crossed that he will.The crew will be coming soon and he will be leaving but hopefully when the season closes the day before Thanksgiving he will be back for the winter caretaker till the following March when the crew returns.I am looking forward to hearing from Ruthie and hope she will have a good season but will miss Allyson and Chris.My husbad,daughter and Iwill be going to the Smokies April 25,and will try to visit Allyson and Chris's new business in Gatlinburg.
3/5/2015 07:39:45 am
I just finished reading a wonderful article about you J.P. and LeConte Lodge in the free Smoky Mountain News. It is a lovely article and certainly gives a taste of what the off season brings for the winter caretaker at LeConte. www.smokymountainnews.com
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